Recipe by Sarah Phillips; Food styling and photos by Kelly Hong © 2009 Sarah Phillips CraftyBaking.com
Variation: Coconut Cream Pie
I love Banana Cream Pie! This pie is heavenly and to die for! I also love chocolate and bananas, so I created a recipe where chocolate is first spread on the bottom of the pastry crust, but you can skip that step, if desired, and place the pastry cream directly on the crust! But, the chocolate adds so much flavor and also acts as a moisture-barrier, helping to keep the crust from turning soggy, instead keeping it fresh and flaky! Find out what kind of chocolate I use that's best for pie recipes!
PIE RECIPE HELP
lkirke, Premium Member, Says: "By the way, your featured banana cream pie recipe was awesome! I might know much about making bread but I have been making pies for years and learned some really great tips on improving my pie crusts...the texture was amazing...YUMMY!"
I started using ganache in the bottom of my pie crusts in 2008, first with my Easy-Breezy Strawberry Cream Tart, because it does not crack when the pie is cut-into! I have since loved my invention! And, ganache can be flavored anyway desired, lending so many variations to any pie recipe!
1 recipe How to Roll, Flute, and Prebake Pie Crust using Kelly's Food Processor Pie Crust for a 9-inch standard or 9 1/2-inch deep-dish pie; bake and cool crust
Simple Chocolate Ganache:
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped; weigh and then chop into 1/4-inch evenly sized pieces
SARAH SAYS: You can use 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
Vanilla Pastry Cream:
2 cups whole or 2% milk
STEP I: MAKE THE CHOCOLATE GANACHE AND COAT THE PREBAKED PIE CRUST
SIMPLE CHOCOLATE GANACHE / recipe alone
1. Bring heavy cream to a boil in a heavy bottomed saucepan.
Pour chocolate into the hot cream. Let sit for 60 seconds before stirring.
2. Stir, IN ONE DIRECTION, to create a smooth ganache emulsion.
3. Cool Ganache: Refrigerate ganache for 15 minutes, stir well in the same direction as before. Chill another 15 minutes and stir again in the same direction as before or until the ganache has thickened and cooled, but has still remained pourable.
SARAH SAYS: If the ganache has stiffened too much, GENTLY reheat, stirring very slowly, until JUST warmed.
4. After making, IMMEDIATELY spread CHOCOLATE GANACHE into cooled, prebaked pie shell, to make a layer about 1/4-inch thick, taking care not to crush the crust.
Spread the ganache up the sides of the crust, too.
SARAH SAYS: This creates a moisture barrier.
5. Chill the pie crust shell until the ganache has set.
STEP II: MAKE THE VANILLA PASTRY CREAM
VANILLA PASTRY CREAM / recipe alone
1. Bring the milk to a boil in a medium size heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisking constantly to make sure it won't burn. Make sure you get into the edges of the pan
2. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt until well-blended and thickened.
Whisk constantly so the egg yolks won't cook, drizzle in 1/4 cup of the hot milk. Repeat with the remainder of the milk, adding it in a steady stream.
3. Place the pan over medium heat, and while whisking constantly, bring the mixture to a boil. Adjust the heat, if necessary so the mixture won't burn.
Allow the pastry cream to boil for 1 to 2 minutes before removing. Take care to reach the corners of the pan with the whisk.
SARAH SAYS: Cornstarch based creams, such as pastry cream used in this recipe, must boil before they can set, taking care not to overcook them.
4. Let the pastry cream sit for five minutes before stirring in the butter chunks, and then, the vanilla extract. Stir until the pastry cream is smooth and all of the butter is incorporated.
5. Place the pan with the pastry cream, in a large bowl filled with ice cubes and water and stir occasionally until the cream is cold, about 10 minutes.
6. Scoop the pastry cream into a medium size bowl, taking care not to scrape the bottom and side of the pan. If the cream is lumpy or has bits of cooked egg whites, alternately strain the cream into the bowl pushing it through a fine mesh strainer with a rubber spatula.
7. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap pressed on the surface of the cream so a film will not form on its surface and place momentarily in the refrigerator to chill.
Press a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the custard and refrigerate until chilled. The pastry cream can be made up to 3 days in advance. Stir well before using.
STEP III: PREPARE THE BANANAS
1. Peel the bananas and cut into slices, about 1/4 inch thick each.
2. Squeeze the juice from 3 lemons and gently toss it with the banana slices.
SARAH SAYS: The lemon juice will keep the bananas from turning brown.
3. Set aside until ready to use.
STEP IV: ASSEMBLE THE GANACHE COATED PASTRY CRUST WITH BANANA SLICES AND PASTRY CREAM
1. Take the banana slices from the lemon juice and dab with paper towels to absorb the liquid.
2. Take the ganache-covered pie crust from the refrigerator, as well as the pastry cream. Stir the pastry cream vigorously with a whisk before using.
3. Spread 1/3 of the pastry cream over the chocolate ganache.
Top with half of the banana slices.
Repeat with 1/3 pastry cream, half of the bananas and then, top with the remaining pastry cream.
SARAH SAYS: Set aside or press a piece of plastic wrap on top of the pastry cream and chill until ready to serve. DO NOT store for more than an hour or two before serving.
THE PIE IS MEANT TO BE SERVED IMMEDIATELY, OTHERWISE IT WILL START TO WEEP WATER.
STEP V: COVER THE FILLED PIE WITH WHIPPED CREAM. GARNISH WITH CHOCOLATE CURLS AND SERVE.
1. Mound the whipped cream over the bananas and pastry cream in the pie.
2. Sprinkle the pie with freshly grated chocolate curls.
Serve the pie immediately! Dive in!
Store all cream pies in the refrigerator. They tend to leach water during storage and are best stored for a day!
Coconut Cream Pie